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My Spark decided to land on it's own
1296 15 2018-7-19
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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Last Sunday 15 July I was flying my Spark in one of the parks I usually fly. Approximately after about 7mins my spark decided to land. I tried to cancel the auto landing but it didn't respond. I have managed to bring forward towards me and let it land just infront of me.


I have no idea what happened. I replaced the battteries twice and tried to recreate the issue but it was flying fine without any issue.

Please see the link for my flight record


Spark Flight Record

Looking forward to hearing from you guys

Thanks


2018-7-19
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BrilhasMuito
Captain
Flight distance : 3745554 ft
Brazil
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Did reach the 10% battery mark in this particular flight?
2018-7-19
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BrilhasMuito
Captain
Flight distance : 3745554 ft
Brazil
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Sorry,
Just saw the log.
2018-7-19
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BrilhasMuito
Captain
Flight distance : 3745554 ft
Brazil
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Maybe b/c you were in a warning zone. No errors at all in this log.
2018-7-19
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DJI Natalia
Administrator

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Hello there. I  am very sorry for the inconvenienced that this caused you. Make sure to fly your drone in a field without magnetic interference or warning zone. Also, make sure that your battery is on 50% level and above. Please fly in caution and avoid situations which trigger RTH. If you have further question, please let us know. Thank you.
2018-7-19
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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BrilhasMuito Posted at 2018-7-19 15:03
Maybe b/c you were in a warning zone. No errors at all in this log.

It's Class D so as long as I comply with Drone code it's fine. I tried again to fly with two more batteries and it was fine. No issues at all.

This is something DJI should look into as there is no warning or error message.
2018-7-20
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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DJI Natalia Posted at 2018-7-19 15:08
Hello there. I  am very sorry for the inconvenienced that this caused you. Make sure to fly your drone in a field without magnetic interference or warning zone. Also, make sure that your battery is on 50% level and above. Please fly in caution and avoid situations which trigger RTH. If you have further question, please let us know. Thank you.

There is no warning or error messages about the interference.
I expect DJI to look into it and come out with a solution so that I get a warning before anything bad happens.

If I can only use my drone above 50% battery charge it's not worth having it at all please take it back and refund my money.
2018-7-20
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nixuspix
Captain
Flight distance : 2772244 ft
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Latvia
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Very disappointing news on the one hand, but it's good, that it decided to land at least, not just felt down all of sudden, as some other people have reported here.
2018-7-20
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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nixuspix Posted at 2018-7-20 03:22
Very disappointing news on the one hand, but it's good, that it decided to land at least, not just felt down all of sudden, as some other people have reported here.

The worst disappointing thing is I get a generic and unhelpful response from DJI Admin.
2018-7-20
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DJI Natalia
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Ram-UK Posted at 2018-7-20 03:13
There is no warning or error messages about the interference.
I expect DJI to look into it and come out with a solution so that I get a warning before anything bad happens.

You can still fly your drone below 50%. However. we are just recommending our Customer to fly their drone at 50% battery level and up for safety purposes. To avoid any crash and issue too. If you have further concern, please let us know or you may contact our support team. Thank you.
2018-7-20
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Mirek6
First Officer
Flight distance : 609724 ft
Canada
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Ram-UK,

As weird as it may sound it was you who forced the Spark to land. You did not do it willingly. Forced landing was due to confusion of your Spark's VPS system combined with your commanding it to descend.
This is what happened:
  • 6m 46.3 seconds: Altitude 60.7 metres. You push your throttle stick all the way down causing Spark to start its descent.
  • 7m 1.5 seconds. Altitude 31.8 metres. You still keep your throttle all the way down but something either obstructs your VPS sensor (condensation in the air? fog?) or the VPS sensor gets confused and registeres that you drone's altitude is 40 cm above ground. One tenth of a second later VPS registers 30 cm above the ground - this is the altiutude at which Spark will stop descending and wait for your command to land. If you keep your throttle stick down for one more second, you will start Forced Landing sequence.
  • You just do that. You keep your stick down, Spark hovers at the same altitude and exactly one second later, it starts Forced Landing. It is as per Spark design. It is correct action.
  • After another second you release throttle but Spark is already in Forced Landing mode. It will not stop until it reaches the ground.



The only question remains - what obstructed or fooled Spark's VPS system 32 meters above ground? In case like this (and I have seen some) the usual culprit is condensation on the sensor (fog). If the day was dry and clear and there was no obstruction, we may have a VPS h/w failure. But since you said that the Spark is fine now, it is less likely.

The fact is that within a span of 3 tenths of a second Spark's VPS dropped from 40 cm to zero, stayed at zero for half a second and than raised back to 30cm the following second. Something obstructed it. And this something was not quite opaque. My bet is on some air condesnation on VPS lens.

From what you observed that day - was there a fog or did air had high humidity which could cause Spark's bottom sensors to fog up?

Mirek
2018-7-20
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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Mirek6 Posted at 2018-7-20 16:09
Ram-UK,

As weird as it may sound it was you who forced the Spark to land. You did not do it willingly. Forced landing was due to confusion of your Spark's VPS system combined with your commanding it to descend.

Thank you very much for analyzing the flight record. I will check and respond later.

It was a sunny and hot day and definitly no fog. Also I could fly straigh after that with new battery and this problem never repeated. I didn't clean the VPS sensors or the lens

2018-7-21
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Mirek6
First Officer
Flight distance : 609724 ft
Canada
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Ram-UK Posted at 2018-7-21 03:02
Thank you very much for analyzing the flight record. I will check and respond later.

It was a sunny and hot day and definitly no fog. Also I could fly straigh after that with new battery and this problem never repeated. I didn't clean the VPS sensors or the lens

Ram-UK

If no fog and condensation, maybe something got stuck to VPS sensors? Hmm..

I any case, please clean VPS sensors and be on a lookout for similar issues.
You may want to analyze your flight records from time to time to see if discrepancy between barometer altitude readings and VPS altitude readings repeats itself. You may, possibly, have an issue with VPS sensor but, at this point, I would simply treat this as just random strange VPS deviation. Weird stuff happens with complex technology.

Mirek
2018-7-22
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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Mirek6 Posted at 2018-7-22 09:08
Ram-UK

If no fog and condensation, maybe something got stuck to VPS sensors? Hmm..

Thank you Mirek.

It’s strange but I flew my drone with three batteries in the same place no issues.

I always check my flight logs to learn about the issues. Airdata is a great place for that.
2018-7-22
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genewSpark
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United States
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Ram-UK Posted at 2018-7-20 05:40
The worst disappointing thing is I get a generic and unhelpful response from DJI Admin.

My Spark Flew away after 11 seconds of flight in a completely unobstructed and remote place.  At 500 feet away the Drone dropped reception to the controller and just flew away at 35 MPH never to be seen again. It could have flew into a highway traffic, kids in a park, path of an airplane. DJI looked at the flight data and said because it was in ATTI mode it was totally my fault. I feel this is ridiculous. They refuse to answer these questions:
1) Even thought it was in ATTI why did it loose connection to my controller in a remote area with no RF interference or physical obstructions?
2) There are audible warnings about taking off, landing, low battery, etc. but if you are at such a risk of  losing your Drone when unknowing it is in ATTI mode, why is there not a similar warning?
3) The area I was at had STRONG GPS signal which I tested, why will they not answer my question why the failure of the GPS was not the true problem. Search the GPS issues with Spark and see how many have had iGPS issues!
4) When the Drone lost connectivity to the controller, why did it not stop and hover as they said it should have done? I could have retrieved it had this happened.

I believe DJI should replace my Drone for 3 reasons:
a) GPS failure
b) Drone did not stop and hover when losing connectivity (thus could result in very dangerous consequences). Two DJI agents said it should have stopped by design.
c)  Inadequate warnings when flying in a dangerous condition they call ATTI mode

I look forward to DJI answering these points
2018-8-1
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Ram-UK
First Officer
Flight distance : 435171 ft
United Kingdom
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genewSpark Posted at 2018-8-1 07:51
My Spark Flew away after 11 seconds of flight in a completely unobstructed and remote place.  At 500 feet away the Drone dropped reception to the controller and just flew away at 35 MPH never to be seen again. It could have flew into a highway traffic, kids in a park, path of an airplane. DJI looked at the flight data and said because it was in ATTI mode it was totally my fault. I feel this is ridiculous. They refuse to answer these questions:
1) Even thought it was in ATTI why did it loose connection to my controller in a remote area with no RF interference or physical obstructions?
2) There are audible warnings about taking off, landing, low battery, etc. but if you are at such a risk of  losing your Drone when unknowing it is in ATTI mode, why is there not a similar warning?

Sorry to hear your loss. Good luck with your case and hope you get a favourable response.
2018-8-2
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